Complete Cost Help guide to Renting An HDB Flat In Singapore
According to PropertyGuru's Consumer Sentiment Study H1 2021, 72% of Millennials are thinking of moving out through the the coming year. However, investing in a property in Singapore is expensive and the only other method to have a place to yourself would be through renting.
HDB flats are currently the most affordable option around the open market. However, even though you engage a real estate agent to facilitate looking and show you through the process, tenants should still take note of the many factors to avoid unnecessary headaches. There's more to look out for aside from snatching up a good deal around the rental price.
So, this is a complete cost guide on which to look out for with regards to renting a HDB flat in Singapore (in the open market).
Be Aware Of Tenants' Regulatory Criteria For Renting HDB Flat
Before visiting the HDB flat for viewing, you should look into the preliminary regulation criteria to be a tenant.
Non-Citizen Quota: Aside from Singaporeans, Permanent Resident (PR) and Malaysian, foreigners could be subjected to the Non-Citizen Quota. The quota is placed at 8% at neighbourhood level and 11% at block level. Do observe that this quota does not apply to renting bedrooms. Check around the HDB portal when the place of rental has reached the quota or otherwise.
Minimum Rental Period: The minimum tenancy is 6 months.
Maximum Quantity of Tenants: Depending on the HDB flat size, the amount of occupants varies the following:
Property Ownership: Tenants cannot be the owner of a professional condominium where the 5-year minimum occupation period is not over. Additionally, no HDB flat ownership or dual HDB flat tenancy is allowed unless there are special circumstances for example being divorced.
Tenants should always look for documentation evidence of flat ownership and HDB's approval to rent. After assortment of keys and relocate date, do ensure that your tenancy have been legally approved via HDB portal.
Check The Fair Market Price for HDB Rental
Once you've cleared the necessary criteria to become a legal tenant, you can begin searching for a flat to rent.
HDB regularly publishes rental statistics for HDB resale flats. This could behave as a reference point for the rental search. Do observe that these are median prices of whole HDB flats. Prices for single bedrooms are not covered during these statistics.
|Ang Mo Kio||–||*||$1,750||$2,140||$2,400||*|
|Choa Chu Kang||–||*||*||$1,800||$1,880||$2,200|
These prices are in line with the latest 2021 3rd Quarter monthly rental rate on the HDB website. The highest rental area could be Bukit Merah at $2,800 monthly for a 5-room as the cheapest could be $1,530 monthly for a 3-room at Bukit Panjang.
Set Aside Funds For Other outlays Besides Rent
Other than rent, there are other costs to renting a HDB flat that tenants should look out for for example direct living costs and hidden costs that can arise in the tenancy agreement. Before signing against any tenancy agreement (TA), it is good practice to determine the agreement against regulatory standards such as Council for Estate Agencies (CEA) standard agreement template. Do note that it is not a legitimate requirement to utilise the CEA's TA template. Should there be deviations, you should find out the rationale out of your landlord or agent and how will it affect you as the tenant.
Utilities and Internet
|Premises Type||Jan ’21|
Assuming you choose MyRepublic no contract plan of $59.99 (without factoring any promotional rates) – our recommendation for no contract broadband plan – for the broadband plan, you can expect your utilities and internet bills to vary from $124 to $187 monthly.
Furniture, Furnishing & Maintenance
For a furnished rented HDB flat, it is important to check against the TA on the agreed terms. Based on the standard CEA's TA, there'd be a “problem-free period” whereby the landlord wouldn't be in a position to hold from the tenant for just about any damages recognized by the tenant during the period. Afterward, it would be up to the tenant to make sure “good order and condition” and the tenant is responsible for all minor repairs, maintenance and replacements.
For an unfurnished rented HDB flat, the budget allocated for furniture depends on the individual wants and needs. Purchasing the necessary work-home station can set you back about $500 and decorating a cosy bedroom could be another $500. In total, be prepared to part with about $1,000 for that necessary furniture to work from home.
Of course, it's possible to pay out more for more luxurious furnishings at your own expense if that's within your budget.
Air Conditioning (Quarterly Maintenance)
Air conditioning maintenance is usually in the expense of the tenant as mentioned on the CEA's sample TA. Tenants are responsible for the cost of quarterly maintenance of the air conditioner units. In the case of breakdown, the owner will be responsible for the replacement and repair only when the breakdown isn't due to tenant negligence. If the cause of the breakdown is a result of the tenant, every cost will be borne through the tenant.
The cost of general aircon maintenance can range from $160 to $480 each year depending on the quantity of units.
Most HDB flats do come with the necessary household appliances for example fridge, washer and lights. Depending on your needs and preference, there may be other appliances you find essential like a kettle, rice cooker, television and more. Investing in a new kettle, rice cooker and tv can cost you about $1,000.
Do observe that your family appliances of the landlord have the same maintenance responsibilities and price tied to them as with furniture and furnishings. Notify landlords in the event of any replacement and disposal to avoid any unnecessary conflicts.
Wear And Tear
Based around the template CEA's TA, tenants aren't responsible for reasonable wear and tear. However, do check upon your existing TA for any deviation in the template wear and tear clause. Some TA may request for co-payment or even the landlord could deduct from the security deposit for that cost of replacing or fixing such wear and tear.
Landlords can claim for any damages that are not covered by insurance that is a consequence of the tenant's negligence or non-maintenance.
These damages include furniture, furnishings, sanitary pipes, wires, pipes and drains. Tenant would be responsible for the compensation whether or not the reason for damage were resulted through an agent for example visitors or pets. In the event of fire, the landlord's insurance would cover the fireplace damage to the home but not the tenant's belongings.
While the landlord might have their own insurance in place to safeguard their interest, tenants should still apply for insurance when it comes to accidental damages the landlord can claim from the tenant. Although the landlord insurance does cover fire damages, the compensation would be usually restricted to the landlord belongings and never the tenants' belongings. For the average price of $75 annually, using a tenancy insurance may even assistance to cover the cost of any accidental damages. Incidents where allow you to claim for that maintenance price of air conditioners.
According to HDB guidelines, the rental deposit is generally about a month's rent for a 1-year TA and a pair of months' rent for any 2-year TA. The amount is payable upon filling out the TA, together with the first month's rent.
Assuming the TA is for one year, the total amount payable upon signing could be 2 month's rent.
Post Tenancy Cost
Lastly, when the term of the tenancy comes to an end, there may be additional costs to ensure that the tenant hands within the flat in “good order and condition”. This could include cleaning and unfitting costs and some landlords might require the repainting from the premises depending on the signed TA.
Assuming that a handover cleaning could be required upon term expiry, the price ranges from $250 to $750 with respect to the unit size.
In summary, renting a HDB flat in Singapore doesn't only contain the monthly rental fees, but there are also other miscellaneous costs to factor into the cost of renting.
Based around the article, renting a 4-room HDB flat in Ang Mo Kio for just one year can rake up an overall total estimated price of $33,572.
|HDB 4-room||1 Year Tenancy|
|Rental (median rent in Ang Mo Kio)||~$25,680|
|Aircon (quarterly maintenance)||~$320|
|Post-tenancy cleaning cost||~$500|